(Archive) Running Log: In Each Shave Lies a Philosophy

Date Location Time Distance
9/15, 3:35 PM Clark Field 25 min 4.5 km

"Somerset Maugham once wrote that in each shave lies a philosophy. I couldn't agree more."

–Haruki Murakami

One of my favorite books is "What I Talk About When I Talk About Running" by Haruki Murakami. It's not a bestseller or pageturner, but the charm is in the mundaneness of the book, it's an account of his running endeavors as well as musings on life. Murakami writes that "if my life were turned into a movie, this would be the episode that editors would likely leave out. It's not bad, but it's ordinary and doesn't amount to much. But for me, these memories are meaningful and valuable."

It's a fitting theme with the subject of the book, which is running. Such a mundane activity can hold so much meaning for people. I'm not going to get into my philosophy/running journey or anything like that, but I thought posts like this would be a nice place to record my thoughts after running. Which is what Murakami was doing, except he published his thoughts in a book.

I have to say I didn't choose the best time: to me this kind of stuff shoudn't matter too much. But afternoon in Mid-September really beats down on your mental spirit, combined with the monotony of a track, seeing the same pole over and over again. Not like I'm complaining or anything: when times get rough and you want to quit at mile 1, I always think of David Goggins running with four layers of clothes in the desert to train his heat resistance. Then I can always squeeze out another couple hundred meters or two.

When I run or see people run, I always think of the same question. Are you running from something, or are you running toward something? It sounds like a deep philosophical thing, but it's just curiousity— and the answer depends on the day. Seven months ago, I was running toward the finish line in Galveston. Today, I'm running from my pile of homework and reading that I put off over the weekend.

If I were writing a memoir, I would have to think of less fitting ways to end things: all I would have to do is cram the running logs into one, and only write one chapter ending. But alas, this is not the case. Until the next time I run (and write).